5 Common Questions Fitness Clients Ask

Fitness clients are naturally curious about the structure and function of the body — especially as they begin to see and feel the physical adaptations to exercise and better nutrition. As such, clients look to their personal trainers for guidance, education, and advice. As the professional, you do have a responsibility to provide your clients with intelligent responses that are within your defined scope of practice. Here are 5 common questions clients ask and suggested responses you can use to address those questions.

Do I need to take an ergogenic aid or dietary supplement to get the most out of my exercise session?

The supplement industry is worth billions and it seems like new performance-enhancing products are released to the open market on a weekly basis. Ads permeate social media feeds and are often touted as “the answer” to all your fitness woes. The sad bottom line: supplements are not subject to rigorous regulatory oversight, so the quality, purity, and efficacy remain in question for most products available.

Can you provide me with a structured meal plan so I can stay on track?

I receive this question almost daily. Exercise and nutrition go hand-in-hand so a person who is an expert with exercise is clearly licensed to dispense specific nutritional guidance, right? Wrong.

What is the best time of day to exercise?

It depends. It’s honestly a matter of personal preference, time allotment, and when a client is at their physical and mental best. Some clients prefer the early mornings while others like a mid-day calorie burn. Guide your clients in selecting a time that works best for them and their lifestyle. The best time for a client is the time that they are prepared to work their hardest and the time that they can commit to regularly throughout the week.

If I lift heavy weights, will I get bulky?

This is a common myth and a question that most of my female clients and students become overly concerned with. Here, you have an opportunity to explain the role hormones play in the creation of muscle tissue and growth (protein synthesis). Testosterone is a primary hormone responsible for muscle growth. While females do produce this hormone, they do not produce nearly as much as men.

If I exercise enough, I don’t need to worry about my diet, right?

Oh, if only this were 100% accurate. But, it’s not. A caveat — exercise may provide a bit more flexibility or room in the diet for caloric intake. That said, it is impossible to out-exercise a bad diet. Exercise requires the body to work hard. To work hard, the body must be fueled appropriately.

Passionate college educator, writer, and health and fitness professional. I am an NFPT-CPT, NSCA-CPT, ACE Fitness Nutrition Specialist, ACE Health Coach, & Pn1.